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Career Planning

With all career possibilities available, how do you make a decision? Once you know what career path you want to follow, how do you get there? To determine your interests, think about what you like to do. Think about experiences you have enjoyed. Evaluate what you liked, what you found challenging, and what you may have learned from those experiences. Make a list of activities you have enjoyed during the past few years. Start thinking about where you want to be What kind of environment are you looking for?

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Work out decisions with family/spouse

Look at your own priorities Will you apply everywhere or will you be specific? Consider your family and friends: what kind of communities matter to 2 you?

Steps to Career Preparation Success

STEP 5 Selfassessment
Who am I? How do I get there?

STEP 2 Career Exploration STEP 3

Keeping the Job

STEP 4 The Job Search

Where am I going?

Making a Decision

Self Assessment: Interests

Think about your interests: What do you like to do? Think about experiences you have enjoyed. What kind of school, religious, social, or sports activities do you like?

Make a list of 10 activities you have enjoyed doing in the past four years.
Evaluate those interests. Think about what you liked about the activities. What challenges did the activities offer? What skills do you need to develop further to continue in those activities?

Self Assessment: Skills

Consider your skills: Evaluate school, volunteer, work, or leisure experiences. Make a list of your school activities (clubs, organizations to which you belonged). Make a list of any volunteer work you have done (either through social, civic or religious organizations). Once you have found a career that matches your interests and skills, you may need to research career options. Check out the following links to internet-based information.

Making the Transition from Academia to Industry


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Search Postings: Jobsdb, Jobstreet, Karir,Mailing list, Job Ad, etc. Post your resume online and offline Market Yourself: Be seen by companies you are most interested in Sign up with Specialized Staffing Companies (only those that are no cost to you) NetworkJoin Professional Organizations Use friends, professors and friends-of-friends Attend career fairs through university or professional organizations

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Professional/Educational: procedures, instrumentation, etc. Other skills (languages, software, etc.)

Invest in yourself
Software skills, internships, volunteering acitivities

It's all about professionalism

Be flexible and realistic

Maybe the best job for you won't have the $40K salary and 9 am-5 pm hours In all likelihood, the job you really want requires the lower-level, lower pay experience

Welcome change! Be VERY proactive


Your Resume

What is the purpose of a Resume?

To represent you and your skills as it applies to a particular position

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Good Resume => Interview Good Interview => Job

Bad Resume => No Interview (& no job!)


Summarize your best qualities, work and/or academic achievements in a paragraph after your objective. Use action words.


Be specific.
Let the employer know who you are.

The Resume: Your 15 second commercial!


Layout clear, concise, error free, 1 page

Gain interest
The information needed to get the job should be easily viewable

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Outline technical skills Is it relevant to the position you're applying for? It's the 21st Century: Be GOOGLE-minded HR may not have technical expertise: Use keywords found in the job description

Making Your Resume Standout


Make it easy to get in touch with youhave as many points of contact as possible (home phone, cell phone, email address, etc.) Have a professional message on any phone number you give out and let people you share a phone number with know you are expecting calls about jobs

Set Facebook, Myspace, etc. profiles to private

Have a professional email address A local address will get you a much better response

Making Your Resume Standout

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Objective What objective in your career Education List degree in bold. List date, school and GPA if over 3.0 Relevant coursework List all chemistry, biology, biochemistry and related courses Be sure to list all lab course separately

Making Your Resume Standout


Include all skills you have learned from lab courses, undergraduate research, internships, etc. Be specificassays, techniques & instruments Don't leave anything out, even if it's been a while since you done it or you've only been exposed to it List in order of amount of experience gained Include computer, software and other secondary skills

Making Your Resume Standout


Industry prefers to see 'chronological' resumes versus 'functional' resumes preferred by academia. A functional resume is a CV. Use reverse chronological order. Always list dates, duties, title and location List all undergraduate research and internships under this section List non-related positions if space allows and always list those below any technical positions

Awards/Activities/Organizations List all scholarships, Dean's list nominations, society memberships, published work, charity work (short description), and presentations given References Available on Request. This is not important to add, you can use it for a space filler or add your references on a separate pageif they need it, they know they can ask for it Do Not: List marital info, age, social security number, any unnecessary info which does not help you (interest in online gaming, religion, politics, etc.)

The Cover Letter

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Send a resume with some kind of introductionyou must have text in the e-mail. Cover letter can be in e-mail text
It will more likely be read that way

First Paragraph
Introduce yourself and why you are interested

Second Paragraph
Why you are qualified (address all requirements from Job Description) Elaborate on your background and why you think you are qualified

Third Paragraph
Thank you and contact info, forward looking statement

Employment Objective

Be Specific. Avoid an overly general objective such as:

"To utilize my abilities in a successful company and ultimately have a position in upper management."


Education Background

Describe academic courses relevant to position sought. You may summarize, i.e. 15 hours of psychology. Consider a section that presents communication experience: for example, courses such as speech, business writing, and foreign languages, and activities such as debate or presentations. If you attended other courses/training, list name and location, then summarize (such as "Completed 30 hours of general education courses"). If appropriate, list certificates and non-university training. Normally, you do not include academic information from high school. Exceptions include foreign language and computer courses, communication activities, and honors and awards.


Provide full entries only for relevant experience, either full-time or part-time.

Use reverse chronology, presenting current or most recent information first. Put dump entry at the end of this section. Provide title for your position only if it strengthens your application. Consider "team leader for sales staff" vs "sales staff."


And More Experience

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Use action verbs plus details. Avoid "responsible for" Use the "how-much, how many" approach. Review tasks for ways to provide specifics. Example: rather than "supervised sales staff," use "supervised five-person sales staff." Use "maintained 2,000 inventory ," rather than "maintained inventory."

Practicums, internships, and cooperative education experiences can be placed under "education" or "work experience" or in a separate section.

Organizations and Activities


Organizations, Professonal Organizations, Professional Activities, and Honors and Awards can be used as headings for sections according to what you have received or participated in. You may have one section, maybe with several "paragraphs," or more than one section.

Computer & Langauge Skills


Describe computer & language skills or abilities in separate section.

You do not have to be an expert to list skills: you can qualify by writing "Limited experience with Word and internet." [Gain at least basic computer skills, even if they are not a major aspect of position sought.]


Tips on Content

Consider abilities and skills you gain from volunteer, community, and similar experiences. Do not include personal data.
Use word choices appropriate for employers: for example, "training" instead of "teaching." Sometimes academic and corporate environments use different terms for the same concept. Check with faculty and former students for buzz words currently in your subject area. Some employers determine whom they will interview by scanning resumes for terms.


Interviewing and Follow Up

Preparation is essential Be familiar with the Job Description and how your skills apply Check out the company's website and be familiar with the products, processes, and current events.

First impressions can lose you or get you the job Leave in plenty of time to account for traffic or getting lost Be on time or 15 minutes early. Do not enter earlier than 15 minutes before you're scheduled as the interviewer may not be ready for you. Review your notes in your car instead. Personal appearance better overdressed than under and always practice good hygiene

Attitude (body language) shadow the interviewer, be engaged, positive and enthusiastic
Firm handshake, always make eye contact and smile often. Be warm and courteous to all those that you meet, from the receptionist to people walking by.

Always bring printed resume and references, unless working with a staffing company Always bring technical writing samples (lab reports, thesis, anything published, etc. Show you are interested prepare thoughtful and intelligent questions, Some examples: What do you think the biggest challenge will be to someone who is just getting started in this position? What would you like to see this person accomplish over the next year or two? Do not bring up money. Let the company bring it up. Never quote a number. Always convey a sense of professionalism and maturity Always express interest in the position and thank the interviewer for their time. Do not chew gum or wear sunglasses and leave your cell phone in your car.

Job Interviewing for Success

Prepare Yourself
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What is an Interview?
What happens at an interview?

Why should I be prepared?


Preparing for your interview

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Have a job interview notebook Research the entire department/company

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Read all their work!

Have a package ready (comfortable dress, shoes) Get sleep beforehand Do not drink too much! You will always get asked the same questions

Why do you want the job? (not because you can ski there what do you bring to the position?)
Where would you go with the job (play to your strengths)

Which geographers have influenced you the most?


Know Yourself
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Qualifications Previous experiences


Know Something About The Company


What does the company do? Who are it's customers? What does it expect of it's employees?

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Check Your Personal Appearance

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Neat and clean Business clothes Don't go to extremes


Go It Alone

Go to the interview alone

Don't bring friends or family members


Arrive Early

Know where you're going

Arrive 5 to 10 minutes early Know who you are supposed to meet with


Stay Alert
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Show interest
Maintain eye contact Answer questions in a business-like manner Be ready to ask questions


Leave Your Problems At Home


Don't talk about personal or family problems Try to turn negative things into "learning experiences"


What do you want to ask them?


They watch carefully to see if you have questions - you better have them! Five year agenda for the department

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How are new employee mentored?

Tenure clock Has anyone been denied tenure? Show interest - do not be complacent!

Say Thank You


Making a good impression means using good manners Be sure to say "Thank You" before leaving
Follow up with a "thank you" note


Thank you letters Be Pro-Active: Follow-through If you are turned down, dig deep!
If you are turned down, ask if there are other opportunities for which you are better qualified. Ask if they would recommend any companies to you.

Learn from your mistakes

If you get consistently rejected, think about it, is it you or the jobs you're applying for?

You got the jobnow what?

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You don't negotiate until you get the offer Be very careful with your offer Negotiation takes time

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Check with people you trust

Ask for a drop in your teaching first year

Startup funds
Salary (women and men)

Don't take too long...

First year responsibilities

Making the Transition from Academia to


Develop your long term goals and make sure that your year works towards those goals Listen a a lot and hungry to learn Find some good colleagues and mentors

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